Go Back   Horizons Unlimited - The HUBB > Regional Forums > Northern Asia

Northern Asia Topics specific to Russia, Central Asia (also known as "the 'stans"), Mongolia, Japan and Korea
Contact Overland Solutions for all your custom modifications and setup for overland travel.

Refreshing, funny, informative, thought provoking, honest, inspirational, infectious, budget overlanding. A handbook, a guidebook but ultimately a genuine traveller’s tale

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 23 Nov 2008
Haakonbj's Avatar
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Oslo
Posts: 129
Oslo - Mongolia - Gobi Dessert

Hi there

Today is a nice, fairly cold, but sunny sunday in Oslo. This is my first post outside the Sahara forum, which I found very helpfull when I planned my journey through North Africa, and cross the Sahara in 2007.

I have just started to look at the possibilities of riding Oslo to Ulan Bator, and then cross the Gobi dessert.

I have a few questions, like..
Whats the best time of the year to cross the Gobi?
Whats the common route (if there is any) from Europe to Mongolia?

Ahead of response, thanx alot

Cheers
Haakon
__________________
Haakon
Check out: North Africa 2007 and The Great African Run
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 25 Nov 2008
Gold Member
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Tokyo
Posts: 148
Thumbs up

Hello Haakon: Anytime between early May to late September should be ok for riding in the Gobi. Earlier or later than that and you risk getting caught in snow and very cold tempertatures. Even in May and September it could snow, but it should melt quickly. Overall the Gobi is the easiest place to ride in Mongolia. The tracks are good and you can often go quite fast on the hard-pack desert, but be careful as short sandy patches and dips come up very quickly!

The nicest time is mid-June to early September. In July and August it can be quite hot in the middle of the day (40 C max) but it cools off quickly and the days are long, so if the weather is very hot you can ride for a few hours in the morning, rest in a shady place (not so easy to find!) during the hottest part of the day, and then ride a few hours in the late afternoon.

Others will have ideas on the best route to get from Europe to Mongolia, but for Mongolia I suggest entering from the far west and then taking the "southern route" and cross the Gobi from west to east.

Scott
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 1 Dec 2008
Haakonbj's Avatar
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Oslo
Posts: 129
Hi Scott
Thanks for the info. Its much appreciated. Whats the time range, you reccon, from west to east?

Mvh
Haakon
__________________
Haakon
Check out: North Africa 2007 and The Great African Run
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 1 Dec 2008
Gold Member
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Tokyo
Posts: 148
If you want to do it at an enjoyable pace with time to explore, take photos, meet locals, I would say allow at least two weeks, and three would be better. You can definitely do it quicker but you won't see as much or have as much fun.

Scott
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 17 Dec 2008
Registered Users
HUBB regular
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Hawaii
Posts: 73
Routes through Mongolia -
besides the Southern route Scott mentioned,
there is a possibility to go the Northern route - that's the one McGreggor and Boorman did in 2004 (LWR), so if considering that, I would watch their DVD to get an idea.

I did the Southern route in 2005 going East to West and there were no major bad surprises.

Remember meeting two Finnish guys, I think their names were Visa and Vesa (one rode a BMW GS1150, the other a large bore Japanese thumper - brand?) - you may be able to get more info from them. Not sure if they're on this forum or on the ADVrider, or both.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 17 Dec 2008
Gold Member
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Tokyo
Posts: 148
Yes, the northern route is more scenic: more hills/mountains, grassy meadows and forests vs. desert. But also more of a risk of long days of slow, treacherous riding in the mud if you get rains. If it's dry it's a great route, and if you have time you don't have to worry as much about the mud/rain as you can just wait a few days for the tracks to dry out.

But if you're in a hurry (or if you prefer desert riding) then the southern route is better.

Scott
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 18 Dec 2008
george t's Avatar
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: London, UK
Posts: 119
Visa / Vesa

Quote:
Originally Posted by Traveldog View Post
Routes through Mongolia -
besides the Southern route Scott mentioned,
there is a possibility to go the Northern route - that's the one McGreggor and Boorman did in 2004 (LWR), so if considering that, I would watch their DVD to get an idea.

I did the Southern route in 2005 going East to West and there were no major bad surprises.

Remember meeting two Finnish guys, I think their names were Visa and Vesa (one rode a BMW GS1150, the other a large bore Japanese thumper - brand?) - you may be able to get more info from them. Not sure if they're on this forum or on the ADVrider, or both.
here is the Visa / Vesa mongolia trip blog in english,

moposivut.com

I have been trying to find out fuel range required for both mongolia routes but I haven't managed to find a definitive answer anyone know??

from blogs etc seems that anything around 220-250 km would be sufficient..
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 18 Dec 2008
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Stockholm, Sweden
Posts: 122
Hi haakon.

I drove my van to Mongolia from Sweden this summer. Entered in western Mongolia where I parked my van in a garage. I then rode around Mongolia on My KTM 640 adv. Did a loop from west to UB and then back.

I would recommend to take the ferry from Stockholm to riga and enter Russia from Latvia. There is much less traffic on the road from Riga to Moscow compared to the road from St:Petersburg to Moscow.

The fastest road to Mongolia is as follows Moscow - Nizhniy Novgorod - Kazan - Ufa - Chelyabinsk - Yekaterinburg - Tyumen - Omsk - Novosibirsk - Barnaul - border to western Russia.

It took me about 7-8 days driving my van from early morning to late evening to get through russia...14 days would a pleasant pace.

In Mongolia there is actually three routes from west to UB. there is also possibility's to travel one route a bit and then cross over (north/south) to one of the other routes... look at a map and you'll see it more clearly... I found the western and northern part much more intressting than the central part. I didn't go down to the southern Gobi. Didn't have the time and energy. In Mongoila I rode about 250-400km a day. I did the southern/middle route first and then the norther on my way back. This because when I arrived in Mongolia there had been lots of rain this year in the northern/central parts, so check with the locals when you arrive before deciding the route...

Have fun!
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 18 Dec 2008
Gold Member
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Tokyo
Posts: 148
Quote:
Originally Posted by george t View Post

I have been trying to find out fuel range required for both mongolia routes but I haven't managed to find a definitive answer anyone know??

from blogs etc seems that anything around 220-250 km would be sufficient..
250 km should be enough range for any traveling in Mongolia unless you go far, far beyond the usual tracks. Almost every small village has at least some fuel available. Just make sure you top up frequently because sometimes the rural petrol stations run dry and have to wait a few days for the next fuel tanker to come along.

Scott
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 19 Dec 2008
Registered Users
HUBB regular
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Hawaii
Posts: 73
+1 what Scott says about topping off religiously at every gas station when out in the countryside. The gas in the villages is often low octane (80). It was not a problem with my DRZ, not sure about other bikes.

I had a total capacity of 5 gallons (20 liters), never had a problem in Mongolia (my DRZ400 gets about 50 mpg). If I remember correctly, the range you need in Mongolia is about 150 miles (250-ish km), but always good to have a little extra.

The only time I ran out of fuel was in Siberia, when a gas station in one of the villages was out of service, so I had to essentially cover double the usual distance in between fuel stops.
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 20 Dec 2008
Haakonbj's Avatar
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Oslo
Posts: 129
Thankx a lot Traveldog, scottw, Spakur and George t. From the info I have received from you, the hole trip seems doable in a reasonable time. Cant wait to get going, but I guess it wont be this summer

My bike (94 Tenere 660) is kind of worn out after the Sahara trip, and needs a lot more work. I am now looking at the new edition of the Tenere, and I have set a departure date, 1. mai 2010. That gives me time to by a new bike and make a good planning.

Do any of you have a reference to Kazakhstan? That would be a nice bonus on a trip like this.

Mvh
Haakon
__________________
Haakon
Check out: North Africa 2007 and The Great African Run
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 22 Dec 2008
usl usl is offline
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: Turkey
Posts: 338
As for Kazakhstan .... i found it the most boring route i ever made ... of course the mountain region was fun ( Kyrygzstan border area ) but from there to russian border .... was just boring....... but on the otherhand, lots+lots of people told me "whats there to see in Mongolia" too ... ... lets just say Kazakhstan wasnt my kind of place or maybe i wasnt in a nice mood ...
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 24 Dec 2008
Registered Users
New on the HUBB
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 3
Quote:
Originally Posted by george t View Post
here is the Visa / Vesa mongolia trip blog in english,

moposivut.com

I have been trying to find out fuel range required for both mongolia routes but I haven't managed to find a definitive answer anyone know??

from blogs etc seems that anything around 220-250 km would be sufficient..
Hi, I'm Visa (from Visa / Vesa :P )

Longest distance between fuelstations was about 250km. But if you are planning to do that kind of trip with bike which fuel range is 250km I recommed to take some extra fuel because always some fuel stations can be closed or empty. 350km fuel range should be enough.

Like Traveldog wrote, fuel was usually 80 octane (not sure was it really 80octane or did they only had old labels on their old fuelpumps). In our group was 1100GS, 640 LC4 and DR800 and all of them work nicely with that fuel.

In Russia you can choose about any route what you want. If you stay at bigger roads you have never problem with fuel range. Traffic is not a problem when you are driving outside of the cities. Most of the roads are good enough to drive 100++kmh. If you just want to pass Russia as fast as possible just choose the shortest way and avoid big cities.
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 24 Dec 2008
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: nw england
Posts: 364
hi vesa on your web page you said the guy on the 640 had riden from magadan .do you know how he got there with his bike? any info please. i am trying to find a way from magadan to anchorage for next summer. thanks for any help
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 24 Dec 2008
Registered Users
New on the HUBB
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 3
Quote:
Originally Posted by kito View Post
hi vesa on your web page you said the guy on the 640 had riden from magadan .do you know how he got there with his bike? any info please. i am trying to find a way from magadan to anchorage for next summer. thanks for any help
He took flight from anchorage to magadan. I think that only company which flight from magadan to north america (anchorage) is magadan airlines. Mavial Magadan Airlines - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Before our mongolian trip I send an email to magadan airlines and ask the price for motorcycle cargo. If I remember correctly, the price was something like $4-5/kg.
Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 Registered Users and/or Members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
UK to Oslo ? uk_vette Route Planning 6 28 Apr 2008 23:54
KTM Gobi Panniers? Giles4060 KTM Tech 3 20 Jan 2006 00:03
Repair damaged Gobi/plastic panniers Ian Hadden TRAVEL Hints and Tips 0 4 Jun 2005 07:27
Dessert Tracks rroberts Australia / New Zealand 7 1 Apr 2003 22:03
Taking a truck to dessert Musenbrock Sahara Travel Forum 2 6 Aug 2002 18:23

 
 
 

NEW! HU 2015 Motorcycle Adventure Travel Calendar is now available! Get your copy now for some terrific travel inspiration!

HUGE, 11.5 x 16.5 inches, beautifully printed in Germany on top quality stock! Photos are the winning images from over 600 entries in the 9th Annual HU Photo Contest!

Horizons Unlimited 2015 Motorcycle Adventure Travel Calendar.

"The calendar is magnificent!"

"I just wanted to say how much I'm loving the new, larger calendar!"

We share the profit with the winning photographers. YOU could be in the HU Calendar too - enter here!

Next HU Eventscalendar

See all events

 

Latvia to Australia, an inspirational 5 month journey full of unexpected adventures!


Renedian Adventures

Renedian Adventures

What others say about HU...

"I just wanted to say thanks for doing this and sharing so much with the rest of us." Dave, USA

"Your website is a mecca of valuable information and the DVD series is informative, entertaining, and inspiring! The new look of the website is very impressive, updated and catchy. Thank you so very much!" Jennifer, Canada

"...Great site. Keep up the good work." Murray and Carmen, Australia

"We just finished a 7 month 22,000+ mile scouting trip from Alaska to the bottom of Chile and I can't tell you how many times we referred to your site for help. From how to adjust your valves, to where to stay in the back country of Peru. Horizons Unlimited was a key player in our success. Motorcycle enthusiasts from around the world are in debt to your services." Alaska Riders

contest pic

10th Annual HU Travellers Photo Contest is on now! This is an opportunity for YOU to show us your best photos and win prizes!

NEW! HU 2014 Adventure Travel T-shirts! are now available in several colors! Be the first kid on your block to have them! New lower prices on synths!

HU 2014 T-shirts now in!

Check out the new Gildan Performance cotton-feel t-shirt - 100% poly, feels like soft cotton!


What turns you on to motorcycle travel?


Global Rescue, WORLDwide evacuation services for EVERYONE

Global Rescue is the premier provider of medical, security and evacuation services worldwide and is the only company that will come to you, wherever you are, and evacuate you to your home hospital of choice. Additionally, Global Rescue places no restrictions on country of citizenship - all nationalities are eligible to sign-up!


New to Horizons Unlimited?

New to motorcycle travelling? New to the HU site? Confused? Too many options? It's really very simple - just 4 easy steps!

Horizons Unlimited was founded in 1997 by Grant and Susan Johnson following their journey around the world on a BMW R80 G/S motorcycle.

Susan and Grant Johnson Read more about Grant & Susan's story

Membership - help keep us going!

Horizons Unlimited is not a big multi-national company, just two people who love motorcycle travel and have grown what started as a hobby in 1997 into a full time job (usually 8-10 hours per day and 7 days a week) and a labour of love. To keep it going and a roof over our heads, we run events (22 this year!); we sell inspirational and informative DVDs; we have a few selected advertisers; and we make a small amount from memberships.

You don't have to be a Member to come to an HU meeting, access the website, the HUBB or to receive the e-zine. What you get for your membership contribution is our sincere gratitude, good karma and knowing that you're helping to keep the motorcycle travel dream alive. Contributing Members and Gold Members do get additional features on the HUBB. Here's a list of all the Member benefits on the HUBB.


Books & DVDs

amazon

All the best travel books and videos listed and often reviewed on HU's famous Books page. Check it out and get great travel books from all over the world.


Motorcycle Express for shipping and insurance!

Motorcycle Express

MC Air Shipping, (uncrated) USA / Canada / Europe and other areas. Be sure to say "Horizons Unlimited" to get your $25 discount on Shipping!
Insurance - see: For foreigners traveling in US and Canada and for Americans and Canadians traveling in other countries, then mail it to MC Express and get your HU $15 discount!




All times are GMT +1. The time now is 08:32.